Michigan Defensive Tackle Mazi Smith Pleads Guilty To Lesser Charge
University of Michigan’s Mazi Smith pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge on Thursday, in a deal that led prosecutors to dismiss a felony charge for gun possession against the football player. Smith will be sentenced under Michigan’s Holmes Youthful Trainee Act, which facilitates the dismissal of charges against youthful offenders so that they can avoid a criminal record.
Smith was arrested in Ann Arbor on October 7th for attempted possession of a loaded firearm in or upon a motor vehicle. Smith was allegedly speeding around 35-40 mph in a 25 mph zone. When the officer approached Smith’s car, the officer said he saw that Smith had an open rifle case in his back seat. Smith allegedly told the officer that he was speeding because he had somewhere to be at 9:30 p.m. and it was already 9:35 p.m. When the officer opened the door to arrest Smith, he said he saw a loaded handgun by the driver’s side door and there was a large bulge in Smith’s right pocket.
When asked if he had a gun, Smith cooperated and said he did. The officer allegedly found a Glock and several magazines of ammunition.
The officer also revealed that while he was in the car with Smith in the backseat, Smith allegedly said that he had the gun because he has been recognized more and didn’t feel safe. Smith was taken into custody by police, processed, and then released. He went back with the team that day and played the next day at Indiana.
Smith never faced a suspension from the team and is not expected to. Jim Harbaugh talked about Smith on Sunday when he was discussing Michigan’s upcoming game in the College Football Playoff matchup with TCU.
“Mazi was completely honest, upfront, cooperative,” Harbaugh said. “Felt like he gave us the exact circumstances. And then, as I said, this has been something that’s gone to the … I really respect the justice system and feel like there’ll be a fair resolution that comes soon from that.”
The Athletic has more HERE.